«Previous    Next»
New Spot Sprayer Uses Electric Rope Wick
At first glance, this new front-mount spray rig looks like a conventional rope wick applicator designed to wipe chemicals on tall-growing weeds. But a closer inspection reveals that it's actually a totally new concept in crop sprayers.
The "electric rope wick", as some have called it, consists of a series of electrically-charged brass rods mounted along a length of pvc pipe. As weeds strike the metal rods, grounding out the electrical circuits, signals are sent to a control box which activates spray nozzles mounted on a boom behind the pvc boom.
Developed by Darryl Davis, Marlin Anderson, and Roger Mosch of Hopkinsville, Ky., the new rig could revolutionize sprayer technology, they say.
An electrical charge (supplied by a tone generator) is applied to the brass rod. When-ever a weed contacts the rod, current runs through the plant and into the ground, changing the frequency of a tone generator which triggers a tone decoder on an integrated circuit mounted inside a control box in the cab. A solenoid-controlled spray valve then sends chemicals to nozzles mounted behind the sensor. An adjustable delay on time permits mounting the nozzles at various locations.
"It provides spray coverage but doesn't lose chemicals to dripping and is much more versatile," says Davis. "I think it works much better than optic sprayers that use an infrared light beam because it's far less ex-pensive, isn't limited by detection of chlorophyll, and isn't affected by dust. The brass rod can be broken up into sections and used over or around the row or between rows. You could use a front-mounted cultivator to spray between rows and a rear-mounted boom to spray above and around the rows. It works great for soybeans and cotton. I think that the idea will really be useful in a couple of years when farmers will be able to apply Roundup postemergence on corn.
"So far I've used it on a 6-row boom on front of my tractor. My neighbor Teddy Morgan tested another model last summer on his Deere high-rise sprayer equipped with a 60-ft. boom. He used it on over 1,500 acres while applying herbicide to no-till soybeans and nitrogen to wheat. He also has a manual override on the control box that allows him to spot spray weeds. The override has five switches, one for each set of nozzles, and each switch lights up whenever the nozzles it's connected to are activated. The manual override controller also has an on-off rocker switch that he can use to turn all of the nozzles on or off at the end of the field as well as a pressure regulator switch."
Davis is looking for a manufacturer. He estimates that a unit set up for a 12-row cultivator would sell for $10,000 to $12,000.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Darryl Davis, 1721 E. 7th St., Hopkinsville, Kent. 42240 (ph 502 885-5608).

  Click here to download page story appeared in.

  Click here to read entire issue

To read the rest of this story, download this issue below or click here to register with your account number.
Order the Issue Containing This Story
1996 - Volume #20, Issue #3